Will Hodgman

Premier of Tasmania



20 November 2014

Matthew Groom, Minister for State Growth

Government Open for Innovative Business Ideas

The Liberal Government has declared Tasmania open for business after years of Labor and the Greens stymying investment.

This week's TasInvest Summit is a prime example of the Liberal Government promoting the opportunities available directly to investors from around the world.

As part of our commitment to allow businesses to get on with delivering exciting projects for the Tasmanian economy, the Government has today released an Unsolicited Proposal framework.

An Unsolicited Proposal is a unique or innovative proposal initiated by the private sector and put to Government. Such proposals may present clear value and benefits for the state but the Government currently has no way to assess or assist with these proposals.

For example, current procurement policies mean that Government currently disposes of surplus land or buildings through an open sale or competitive tender process. If a proponent approaches the government with a unique use for Government-owned property, the Government can't deal directly with that proponent, even if the proposal has clear value and benefit to the state.

Several other jurisdictions including the ACT, NSW and Victoria have Unsolicited Proposal Guidelines.

This is about attracting and facilitating new investment and creating jobs in Tasmania. It's about taking Tasmania to the world and continuing the momentum from TasInvest and the visit of the Chinese President.

The framework released today will mean that a proponents intellectual property is protected while a transparent and consistent assessment consideration of the project's values and benefits takes place.

This ensures that developers can have the confidence to come forward with ideas for job-creating Tasmanian projects. It also means the public can be assured that there is a transparent process for assessment of these ideas which will ensure any proposals approved are in the public interest, represent value for money, are viable, and align with the Government's policies and strategic objectives.

The framework is underpinned by five principles, with proposals needing to:

  • Be unique or innovative and not able to be delivered via normal procurement processes;
  • Align with the Government's policies and strategic objectives;
  • Represent value for money and benefit the Government and broader community;
  • Demonstrate a need and appetite for the project and be in the public interest;
  • Be financially, economically, socially and technically feasible.

Assessments will consist of a three-stage process and includes high levels of probity at each stage before a proposal can advance to the next. Proposals will be lodged with the newly established Office of the Coordinator-General, which will oversee the process.

The framework will apply to unsolicited proposals that have a minimum private investment contribution of $10 million or will create of a minimum of 100 direct jobs in Tasmania. It has been developed to work alongside current procurement policies including the Liberal Government's Buy Local Policy.

With more than 275 investors in the state this week looking for opportunities through TasInvest, now is the time for Tasmania to show the world that we are now open for business.



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